Berlin – UMO Jazz Orchestra

‘Berlin’ composed and arranged by Gabriele di Franco was awarded 3rd prize at the Helsinki International Big Band Composing Contest 2021.

Played by UMO Helsinki Jazz Orchestra – conductor Antti Rissanen.

The composing contest received a record number of compositions: a total of 76 composers from 22 countries and 4 continents. The composers and compositions which made it to the finals after two anonymous pre-qualification rounds are (in alphabetical order):

Robert Cozma (ROM/GER): Evening Walk
Claudia Döffinger (GER/AUT): Nachtwache
Gabriele di Franco (IT/BEL): Berlin
Daniel Hofecker (HUN): Mr S. G.
Tobias M. Hoffmann (GER/AUT): Conspiracy
Amelia Jutilane-Maynard (AUS/AUT): Isolation
Zach Rich (USA): Let Me Clarify
Oskari Siirtola (FIN): Dear Theo
Gordan Spasovski (MKD): Inner Nova
Drew Zaremba (USA): Cheshire

The jury includes American composer and big band leader Bob Mintzer (, composer and pianist Iro Haarla (…), UMO’s artistic director and chief conductor Ed Partyka ( and conductor Antti Rissanen. The concert was hosted by Nina Mya.

The final concert was produced in co-operation with UMO Helsinki Jazz Orchestra, Finnish Big Band Association, and Savoy Theatre.

My congratulations also go to Claudia Döffinger (Germany/Austria) and Oskari Siirtola (Finland) for first and second place.

UMO Helsinki Jazz Orchestra